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Ballet Talk for Dancers

Balancing work and "dance mom" duties


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I have to say that Babarosa comment that we are basically a healthy family unit that does things differently is how I would like to see our lives. And this was confirmed when we applied to have an exchange student for next year. When we met with the regional exchange coordinator she assured us that sitting together for family meals might be nice, but was not what defined living in America in 2005. She didn't seem to think that dd arriving home from rehearsal as DH left for rehearsal was a problem. And that doing a blitz cleaning on weekends was the norm not the abberation.


I don't know that we have any balance in our lives, it just rolls along in a most frequently happy stream that was deemed to be good enough to place someone else's child in our care for a year.


And, as for mom of 3's comment about the top of the refrgerator. I just cleaned it this past weekend and for the 3 minutes when I was on the chair cleaning it and looking at it, it was great - but now I have the satisfaction of knowing (for the next 5 years) that it is clean, 'cause who checks?

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You are all so funny. I appreciate you all!! It makes my life seem real. I tend to be a worry wart sometimes. I think the dance world just keeps throwing me off a bit because I've always tried to be such an organized person! Well, looks like those days are over. :)

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I don't think I could survive without my crockpot! Food is always ready for the first kid who comes through the door after school before they have to leave for their activities. Tutumonkey

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Getting off the fast track for career advancement/management and taking a job where I telecommute has made my life sane :blink: as a single parent. My colleagues are in 3 different US time zones and several overseas, so I'm almost always 'working'. But, the flexibility of working anywhere I have a computer, has allowed me to go with my daughter to SIs when she was younger, serve as a dorm director for a couple of summers, drive her across country to SIs where flying would have been much more costly, provided me with a means to take time for trips with family and friends and still continue working, etc. Not to mention the benefit of being able to provide taxi service at all hours for her ballet and other activities.


This great work set up also allowed me to move across country with her, when she started attending a residency program this year. I'm still nearby and that is a wonderful blessing! :)


I didn't realize that the top of the refrigerator was a washable surface! :thumbsup:

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The way I look at it, the house will always be there to clean, but my children are growing up so fast. My secret there is that I have a cleaning woman come in to do the heavy cleaning that I don't have time to do.


I want my twins to look back on their childhood experiences with fond memories. My parents weren't able to participate and support my activities growing up because they were both working, so I work extra hard to make it happen for my kids. I know there are many of us who feel the same way.


To all the moms and dads who support dancers, enjoy the rest and relaxation while your dks are away at SIs. You've earned it, I'm sure!


Best of luck to your children and to you as you transport them all over the country for the summer!



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My best tip - roll with the punches, and take a laptop and cell phone everywhere. My job is pretty flexible, thank goodness, but being accessible at all times makes my boss, and me, feel more connected and in control. Also, getting used to the fact that everyone in the family eats dinner at a different time on weekdays is a big plus. I had to let go of that, "family dinner" image in my mind. We all get fed, we all enjoy it, and that is good enough!

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* knock knock* not a ballet parent, but when I was growing up in a large and very variously active family in the arts (5 siblings with only 6 years difference between eldest & youngest!), my mother gave up on the idea of family evening meal during the week. But we did have a family breakfast most weekdays. Luckily, most of us were (still are) early risers!

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The speaker recommended that floors not be mopped unless one sticks to them


My solution to sticky floors? Wear socks! You don't make those funny noises like when you have shoes on, and it doesn't feel icky like when you're barefoot.


I only clean as often as necessary--like when someone (the appliance repairman perhaps) is coming over and I can't arrange to be out of the house. I think sometimes my husband or daughter will invite company over with the sole purpose of getting us all motivated. Then the house will look pretty good, but it takes forever to find where everything has been hidden away. (Visitors probably wonder why so many rooms have closed doors.) Another tactic is to have a dog with a ferocious bark in the house. If anyone unexpectedly shows up, squeeze through the front door while smiling and apologizing for the dog barking loudly right behind you. The visitor is usually so frightened, they would never think you were rude for not inviting them in. :party: Works well for pushy salesmen, too. :yes:

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Yes I know my mom thinks all this is crazy. The driving all over and nvr being home. I work with my husband(he ownes his own business) which definately helps, volunteer at church, school and the dance studio. Both my girls dance the older one is serious and lives at the studio, the younger usually takes a couple of hours and also takes piano lessons. So between all the places we go my house is a disaster, but who cares since we only sleep and eat there.


I do laundry and cook and the girls do dishes and bathrooms. That's about as good as it gets. And my Mom isn't even allowed on the street. We go to her. Even on the rare occasion that I get everything clean and invite her over it's nowhere near what her house is and she gets figidity.


I so wish we could carpool. We are about 30-40 minutes from the studio, but everyone lives right by the studio or North of it. We are the complete opposite direction of everyone else.


Even with our hectic schedule we always find time to be together and we laugh alot. I figure that is what really matters.

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Ah, yes it is a balancing act. As sole support of the family and primary caregiver of my daughter's dancing life - it's a joyful, but tough life to lead. Not to mention two younger sons that need mom too. And oh yes, my husband, extended family, and friends. Thank goodness I know how to find "me" time as well.

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wowwwwwwww! My hat is off to all of the moms that are doing so many things for their families. Between work and dance parenting, and then all the various duties being a mom requires, you have gone all out for your kids. I salute you!


My life seems much simpler in contrast, I dont work, tho I would like to and I have in the past and will again in the future. Dd's dancing requires almost nothing from me other than driving and help with SI stuff (packing, travel plans), helping her to deal with occasional stressful decisions and situations, etc. I feel extremely thankful to have this time at home, though it has entailed it's own set of sacrifices.


Thanks for sharing your day-to-day, your struggles, sacrifices, etc. I am sure that none of you regret one second of it! :offtopic:

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I don't work outside the home right now as I have 2 other young children :P . I don't know how you working parents do it. Before my middle son was born, I worked a 9-5 and my DS had just added to his dance schedule making it necessary to beg my boss to let me off an hour early to pick him up from day care and take him to his 4:00 class. It was really a pain. Now, I'd like to go back to work, but with 3 kids on different school/activity schedules, I don't know how I could without a nanny. Since I could never see my self hiring a nanny, I guess I'm stuck for a few more years at least.


The two things that keep me sane are: the mom that helps us with ballet class car-pooling and my new-found "keep me from going seriously crazy" activity: ice-hockey. How's that for a new-millennium family: Oldest son is a ballet dancer, mom plays co-ed ice hockey. :offtopic:

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I'm self employed and one of the best things I ever did was set up my home office number so that if my cell phone is on, it rings the cell phone BEFORE the office number. My clients never know if I am sitting at my desk, working on the front porch, etc. I can take calls most anywhere... even on the looong road to the studio. But I must say, I love it when the phone doesn't ring and I can catch up on all the news from my daughter. I will really miss our chat time when she starts to drive!!

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DD is off to her SI in 10 days which means MY HOUSE WILL GET CLEANED. Older daughter home from college so I am less of a taxi for a few months. DD going for her license this fall, which will make a huge difference in my time. As she won't have a car to use everyday, plan to spend my "ballet wait time" this fall reading in the car, trying to finish my Master's Degree (operative word - trying).


Top of the fridge? Clean it once, cover it with a pretty cloth and throw the cloth into the washer every so often. Fridge top stays clean, you're doing laundry anyway. Now if you have any solutions for the FRONT of the fridge . . . or the inside.


Maybe we should start a thread for Favorite Adult Bevvies of Parents with Ballet Students 13+. With recommendations. And recipes. :blushing:

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Taradriver, I know these aren't the kind of adult bevvies you were referring to, but they seem to be my beverages of choice: coffee :D (freshly made only, please, with no sugar or sweetener & no powdered creamers) and real iced tea--must be clear & fresh--with real lemon (sugar or other sweetener optional).


Coincidentally, of the 20 or so times I've sworn off caffeine over the years (I'm the "antsy" type to start with, plus it affects my sleep), 99% of the time it is during the summer, probably because the "mom" schedule tends to be more relaxed which=fewer late nights. But even if I don't need the caffeine jolt, I really enjoy the flavor of both of these, which makes them so impossible to give up. (Caffeine-free varieties--especially tea--just aren't the same!)

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